Monday, April 25, 2011


yesterday, at D's family easter celebration, i announced that i would be taking D's last name.  for a while i toyed with the idea of still having a hyphen; keeping my father's last name and adding D's to it.  the more i'm with d and the kids, though, the more i think i'd like it if we all had the same last name.  we have a joke where whenever someone does something awesome, we say " Go, Team R!" like the venture brothers, which is kind of how this all started.  yesterday, when i said, "oh, i'm just going to be a r----," D's dad actually put his hand on mine, sighed and said, "thank you."  i told him after he bought me a house, i kind of thought that's the least i could do, and he said, "oh! you didn't have to do that!" and we had a good laugh and i realized i'm doing the right thing.  it makes him happy, it makes the kids happy, and i'll always be a bentley, regardless of what my last name is.

plus, only having one last name sounds kind of nice.  you spend 33 years explaining your hyphen and tell me how you feel about it. 

Saturday, April 23, 2011

country roads

this will come as no surprise to anyone, but i've been kind of stressed out lately.  excited and happy too, but also anxious and busy.  the wedding is less than a month away, and it feels like we still have a lot to do.  the week after that we have to move four people out of a house we've lived in for years, and the thought of that is so daunting to me.  i hate moving all by myself, i can hardly bring myself to pack things in any kind of neat or orderly way, i always wait until the last minute and throw things in trash bags and boxes, then procrastinate for MONTHS with the unpacking.  you've seen me move enough times to know that's true! only this time, i'm kind of a grown-up, suddenly have kids, and kind of need to set a better example.  it's also a lot more important to get set up easily and comfortably in the new house, because kids need stability and their toothbrushes.  on occasion the thought of all my responsibilities kind of strikes me dumb.

in addition to all the fun stresses of getting married and having a home of our very own, the kid's mom has come back on the scene.  it's been about 8 years since anyone has heard from her, and guess what brought her back this time?  facebook.  (dear facebook, i hate you even more now. congratulations!)  it's a weird and touchy situation all around; with one kid trying to make contact, and one kid not wanting to have anything to do with her.  D isn't thrilled to have to talk about it either, and we're worried that the kids will end up disappointed or hurt.  to be honest, so far the contact that's been made between her and the kids hasn't looked too promising.  i hope i'm wrong.

today was a crazy beautiful day, though.  spring in the pacific northwest has taken forever to show up, and this is the first sunny, warm day we've had in forever.  the kids were out with their friends, D was at work, so i took a nice long drive.  i forgot my MP3 player, but found some tapes in the car, and spent hours driving around listening to jane's addiction.  by the time i got home, i felt considerably more cheerful.  the sun, the sights, the aimless wandering all did me good.  since coming home i've gotten some wedding stuff done, made plans to do more wedding stuff with my mother-in-law on monday, and tidied up the house.  it's amazing what a long stretch of road does for my mood.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

the evils of facebook

i broke up facebook months ago; at least i thought i did.  turns out, they never really remove your account, they just "deactivate" it, and you're still there, just looking like that asshole who never posts.  which i guess in my case, was kind of true.  it's kind of a long story why facebook became kind of an issue again, but there are things i kind of feel like i need to be paying attention to.  being a quiet and benign presence there can't hurt my parenting skills, let's put it that way.  it's not really the most terrible thing to happen to me; logging in tonight i changed my last name for the first of what i hear is going to be many times, and i got to see what kids i haven't talked to in forever are doing, and i did a little spring cleaning.  i got rid of some friends that had been only work friends (and a long time ago, at that), i pared things down to close friends and family.  my list is much smaller, and the people on there now are people who post things that are actually fun to read.  yay for that.  still, being on there makes me feel strange, and i can't tell if this will be a lasting thing, or if i'll just deactivate again.

also, i think D and i figured out what we song we want to use for our first dance today.  honestly, it came on the radio and we started talking about how awesome it was, and then i said, "hey, we could use this for our first dance."  we came home and listened to it a few more times, and i think we're decided!  we're keeping it a secret though, at D's request.  i will say this: it's not anything either of us would have thought we'd pick.  which is kind of what makes it so rad.   

Saturday, April 16, 2011

my newest crush

*dreamy! handy!*
this guy, antonio ballatore.  he has a show on HGTV, called the antonio treatment, which i have quickly become obsessed with.  i guess he's been on tv for a while, but i only recently discovered him.  i tried to find a photo of him with his awesome glasses, but this will do.  isn't he handsome?  his decorating is also totally fucking insane, and i mean that in the best way possible.  his rooms look bizarre and beautiful, and he's got what i think of as a coney island aesthetic.  plus, he's tall, he can obviously grow a beard, and he's got a super cool dog.  swoon alert!

just check out some of these awesome rooms for yourself, and try to tell me they aren't ridiculously wonderful.  i can only hope some of my house looks so good someday!  

Monday, April 11, 2011

a few home declarations

the knowledge that we are soon moving into our own home, a real house, has slowly been sinking in over the past week.  it all happened so FAST.  barring anything crazy happening in the next week, we'll be closing within a month! 

of course this means i've been thinking a lot about how i want the house to look, what i want to do to it and in it, scanning blogs and paying more attention to home and garden magazines.  in my head i'm making a list of things i do and don't want to do, and i have a feeling this is going to turn into some kind of home-owning manifesto for amanda.  after the jump is a short list of things i'm going to try to adhere to.

grumpy pants

we should leave this in the boychik's room just for spite
man, i have been seriously super grumpy lately.  i think that's what being stressed out does to me, and we're all kind of in a heightened state of "oh my god there's so much to do" and also antsy to get the hell out of this house and into the new one.  i think the only one of us that isn't a grouch right now is the girlchild, and she has been a refreshing change of pace.  if i could have two days alone in the house, i think i could get a lot done and feel a lot less fussy, but the problem about having a family is that you can't kick them out for a few days because you want to.  you need a good reason, and i don't really have one.  also, i need to get over my thing where i only work on house stuff when they're gone.  after all, we're about to get married and they're not going anywhere any time soon.  i am actually going to have to adapt, i can put it off no longer.  at least the kids are back in school today and D works; i feel a great big productive streak coming on already.

lately i'm all about reading home and design blogs and am having five million ideas for things i want to do to the house.  we had the inspection this weekend, so this morning i meet with the realtor to go over the findings and maybe re-negotiate the price.  the report really didn't find much though; there are a few things that will need to be repaired and/or replaced in a few years, so we'll need to set up a fund for that sort of thing, but overall, there aren't any glaring defects.  yay!

Thursday, April 07, 2011

you know what i am really excited about?

having my own tiny space to make a studio in.  i know i don't do a lot of drawing or painting or doodling, but when i do, i am very happy.  that little weird "closet" behind the master bedroom closet calls to me at night, and i've spent days now daydreaming about how i want to paint it and where i want to mount the cork.  right now i have a very steve zissou theme in mind, meaning i need to pick out exactly the right shade of blue for the walls, and obviously paint my desk red.  who's excited?  THIS GIRL.

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

guess who isn't really working on anything wedding related at all?

that would be me.  shit, all i can think about are things i want to do to the new house, as in painting, and things i want to do at the new house, like barbequeing.

in reality, i don't have a ton of stuff left to do.  the invitations took FOREVER because i'm a tard and making them all by hand was not my smartest idea.  at the same time, they turned out cute, so i shouldn't bitch.  there's still plenty of stuff that needs to be bought, though.  the kids need outfits, the tables need tablecloths, the centerpieces need centers, yadda yadda.  we should also probably get a marriage license, assign the pies to our loved ones, and make a menu.

honestly, i'm overwhelmed.  sometimes happily so, sometimes in a spazzed out kind of way.  this is a lot to do in a short amount of time, and while it's all very excited, it's also a lot of work.  a month and a half left, i should probably be doing something other than blogging! 

Monday, April 04, 2011

when it rains it pours

that saying also applies to good things, thank goodness.  in about two months i'll be married, have a new-ish last name (i'm still trying to decide if i'll hyphenate or not!), and guess what?  i'll also be a homeowner.  well, mostly a homeowner.  my amazing in-laws are helping us buy our very first home!  we've been talking about it with them for a while now, but had decided last week that we should really just focus on the wedding stuff, and look at houses after that was all over.  then, we all (independent of each other) saw this house come on the market that we thought looked great.  one thing led to another, we saw the house, fell more in love with it, made and offer, and TA-DAAH!  as it stands right now we move in the monday after the wedding.  isn't that crazy?

it's a great house, just big enough for the four of us, with both a sitting room and a living room, a nice big backyard, a deck, a garage with a shop built into it, and this weird "storage" room off the master bedroom that is so becoming my little craft cave.  it was a great price, we discovered that we actually know the owners, and our experience with the realtors and inspectors and all that has been good. 

to be honest, my brain is going a thousand different ways at once.  i wonder how we're going to take down the wallpaper in the kid's rooms (it's kind of dated and too young for the kids), what i'm going to paint the bedroom, how much it will cost us to buy a refurbished or used washer/drier set,  what will come with us and what we'll get rid of, what other sorts of things i should put on the bridal registry that we'll need a new place, etc.  i literally couldn't sleep last night i was so excited.  i've been in rentals now for 14 years; being able to make a place really, truly my own is just totally fucking thrilling.  it's blowing my mind! 

and here, my dears, is our lovely new place,
i'll let you know when the house-warming party is! 

Friday, April 01, 2011

creepy crawlies

the boychik and i rented some scary movies tonight, because that's what we do when we have the house to ourselves, and we both agreed that paranormal activity looked interesting.  you know, we wanted to see what all the fuss was about. 

we watched almost the entire movie with blankets up near our noses so we could hide if we needed to.  it was creepy in it's everyday-ness, kind of like the blair witch project, but you know, IN YOUR HOUSE.  *shiver*  we tried to put something else in afterward, and the dvd player made a very wrong noise, and we had to shut that shit off, and then we giggled nervously in the living room at our ridiculousness. 

he'll kill me for telling you this, but i can't help it!  we are feeling creeped out.  scary movie night just bit us in the ass!